Wickliffe

Overview

Wickliffe is a picturesque township in Western Victoria, located on the glenelg highway between Ballarat (100km), Hamilton (80km) and Warrnambool (100km). Wickliffe is nestled on the banks of the hopkins river. Wickliffe has various community groups such as: junior cricket, football, tennis, walking groups, country fire authority etc

Plaques have been placed to depict important sites around Wickliffe and make an interesting walk. For nature lovers the river offers the chance of a platypus or echidna encounter.

History

Nestled on the banks of the Hopkins River in western Victoria, the village of Wickliffe offers visitors a glimpse of the 19th Century with some noteworthy bluestone buildings including the church, its manse and several private residences.

A short distance away is well known Narrapumelap homestead which hosts several open days every year.

Narrupumelap, considered one of the most significant examples of the French Gothic style in Rural Victoria, was built in 1873 by the wealthy pastoralist John Dixon Wyselaskie. The mansion stands as a testament to both the original owner's eccentricity and the obsession of early Australians to recreate the grander illusions of their homelands. The unique and exciting aspect of the mansion is the completeness of this vision. The entrance to the property is through perhaps the finest wrought iron gates gracing a country property - providing the visitor with an elegant example of 19th century casting. The gates are hung on massive blue stone columns. The nearby gate-house in the Gothic Revival style sets a mood of anticipation. An elm-lined carriageway winds through a 20 hectare park of specimen and decorative trees. The first glimpse of the homestead is a partial view of the dramatic tower only just discernable amongst the canopy trees. Another small blue stone entrance leads the visitor up a further drive enclosed by garden to finally confront the French Gothic fantasy of the architects Davidson and Henderson.

Of the special interest are fine examples of period stained glass, a pair of exceptional life-sized cast iron lions that formerly flanked the entrance of the house, finely moulded cornices, the fanciful cathedral styling of the entrance hall and a unique courtyard surrounded by an immense but stylised blue stone wall.

The mansion is currently undergoing restoration but despite this stage of incompleteness, is unlikely to fail in delighting the connoisseur of historic buildings, and is open by appointment http://www.narrapumelap.com.au/